All Ferrari production road cars, from the 1952 Ferrari 212 Inter Cabriolet, have been designed by Pininfarina in Turin, where Sergio became President in 1966 following his father Battista. Famously, it was Sergio Pininfarina who, in 1965, persuaded Enzo Ferrari to build his first mid-engined car, the Ferrari Dino 206 GT.
Sergio Pininfarina was born in Turin on September 8, 1926. He graduated in mechanical engineering from the Polytechnic of Torino in 1950, then he began his career in the family firm, Carrozzeria Pinin Farina; in 1960, he undertook the responsibility of General Manager of the firm; in 1961 he became also Managing Director and in 1966, at his father's death, he took over the Chairmanship of the Company; in 2006 he became Honorary Chairman.
In 1961, the President of the Italian Republic, Giovanni Gronchi, changed by decree the name Farina in Pininfarina. In 2005 he was appointed Life Senator for honouring the Country by high merits in the social field.
Sergio Pininfarina's main positions include:
- From 1974 to 1977 he has been professor of "Car Body Design" at the Polytechnic of Torino. President of the Industrial Association of Torino (1978-1984);
- Member of the European Parliament (1979-1988);
- President of the Federation of Industrial Associations of Piedmont (1983-1988);
- President of International Organisation of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers (1987-1989);
- President of Confindustria (1988-1992);
- Board Member of AUME (Association for the Monetary Union of Europe, 1989-1997);
- Vice President of UNICE (Union of Industrial and Employers' Confederations of Europe, 1990-1994);
- President of Comitato Leonardo - Italian Quality Committee (1993-1996);
- Co-President of "Comitato per la Direttrice Ferroviaria Europea Transpadana" (1991-2001);
- President of Banca CRT (2001-2002);
- Chief of the Italian delegation in the Intergovernmental Italian- French Commission for the new high-speed railway link between Lyon and Turin (2001-2005);
- Chairman FIDIA S.p.A. (1996-2006);
- Co-President Italy-Japan Business Group (2004-2007);
- Chairman Editrice La Stampa S.p.A. (2004-2008);
- Member of the Board of Directors of Ferrari S.p.A. (1969-2011).
Sergio Pininfarina received numerous honours: he was appointed "Cavaliere del Lavoro" by the President of the Italian Republic (1976); Légion d'Honneur (Chevalier, 1979, and Officier, 1997), "Honorary Royal Designer for Industry" (1983), Foreign Member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (1988), Designer Lifetime Achievement Award (1991), Super Trophée de l'"Automobile Magazine" (1992), "Guglielmo Tagliacarne" award (1994) , the "Italy in the World" award (1994), the Career Award Compasso d'Oro (1995), the "France-Italie" Award (1997), "Lion d'Oro" (1998), "Trophée du design" (1998), Premio Leonardo (1999), "Head of the Century in the International Automotive Hall of Fame" (2001), the award "Torino libera" (2001), Business and Culture Award (2003), Palme d'Or du Festival Automobile International (2005), Automotive Hall of Fame of Dearborn, Michigan (2007); European Automotive Hall of Fame of Geneva (2008).
He received 4 Honorary Degrees: in 1993 the Honorary Degree in Economics and Commerce by the LUISS-Rome; in 2002 the one of the Royal College of Art of London and the one in Industrial Design of the Polytechnic of Milano; in 2004 the one as Doctor of Fine Arts from the College for Creative Studies-CCS of Detroit.
Pininfarina SpA was founded in 1930 by Battista "Pinin" Farina and quickly developed a unique and worldwide reputation for design, not just of cars but also a wide range of industrial design products. The first car designed by the company was the 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300, its most recent the Ferrari F12berlinetta, while other products designed include high speed trains, trams, domestic appliances, drinks dispensers and the 2006 Olympic Torch. Today the company employs more than 3500 people around the world.
Images courtesy of Pininfarina Italy.